If you’re wondering why you’re hearing so much about spaying and neutering your pets these days — everything from low-cost clinics to fund-raising ”SPAY-ghetti” dinners — it’s because this is Spay/Neuter Awareness Month.
February will see a host of events across the country, all leading up to World Spay Day on Feb. 26, which promotes working together to bring an end to the euthanasia and suffering of homeless companion animals, feral cats and street dogs.
This year, PetSmart Charities is providing grants, under a program called “Beat the Heat,” to 61 clinics, aimed at spaying and neutering 15,500 cats. The Doris Day Animal Foundation is awarding a $75,000 grant to fund spay/neuter programs for pets in 16 towns and cities in 14 states.
The HSUS is partnering with the ASPCA to host a low-cost spay/neuter event for pets in East Harlem in New York City on Feb. 23. The Iowa Humane Alliance plans to host “Twenty Bunny Monday” on Feb. 25, a day reserved solely for spaying or neutering twenty rabbits. East Tennessee Spay Neuter hosted “Hunka, Hunka Furry Love” — featuring a singing dog named Melvis — over the weekend to sign up low-income clients for pet spaying and neutering.
And here in what’s my home base for now, Winston-Salem, N.C., scores showed up — including the young couple above doing their best Lady and the Tramp imitation — at a “SPAY-ghetti” dinner yesterday to raise funds to reimburse veterinarians who offer low cost spaying and neutering.
The dinner at the West End Cafe was sponsored by Humane Solution, an all-volunteer, nonprofit organization that believes spaying and neutering is the key to reducing pet overpopulation and reducing euthanizations.
Humane Solution is a coalition of area shelters, including the Forsyth Humane Society, that relies solely on donations, grants, and fundraisers to make the low-cost spay/neuter program possible. The organization also sponsors rabies and microchipping clinics several times a year that help fund the program to help pay for spay/neuter surgeries.
As part of Forsyth Spay Day, on February 23, the organization will be handing out vouchers for spaying and neutering to qualified applicants at six different locations.
World Spay Day got its start as Spay Day USA in 1995, sponsored by the Doris Day Animal League. It now includes participants in 45 countries. Events include low and no-cost spay/neuter clinics for under-served communities, fundraisers to benefit spay/neuter programs and educational campaigns.
Since Spay Day’s inception, it is estimated that more than one and a half million animals have been spayed or neutered in conjunction with the campaign.
Its partners include The Humane Society of the United States and Humane Society International, the Doris Day Animal Foundation, the ASPCA, the House Rabbit Society, the Humane Alliance, the Humane Society Veterinary Medical Association, Petfinder, and PetSmart Charities. World Spay Day 2013 is sponsored by Abaxis. To find a World Spay Day event near you, visit worldspayday.org.
“Sterilizing dogs and cats is the best way to stem the overpopulation of cats, dogs and other pets, and to prevent homelessness and suffering,” said Wayne Pacelle, president and CEO of The Humane Society of the United States. “World Spay Day allows caring people the world over to come together and raise awareness about the life-saving benefits of spaying and neutering …”
The HSUS is hosting a World Spay Day 2013 online Pet Pageant. Participants can upload their pets photo until March 19, and all proceeds will benefit local U.S. non-profit organizations participating in World Spay Day.
Posted by jwoestendiek February 11th, 2013 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, aspca, awareness month, cats, clinics, dogs, doris day animal foundation, events, forsyth county, forsyth humane society, funding, grants, hsus, humane society of the united states, humane solution, low cost, neuter, north carolina, overpopulation, pets, petsmart charities, programs, rabbits, spaghetti, spay, spay day, spay day usa, spayghetti, vouchers, west end cafe, world spay day
As Pit Bull Awareness Month draws to a close, celebrations of the dogs — and books and movies about them — are popping up all over.
Events designed to increase public understanding of, and support for, pit bulls are being held across the country.
And today, author Ken Foster’s book, “I’m a Good Dog“ – a tribute to the pit bull in words and photos — hits book stores.
“I’m a Good Dog: Pit Bulls, America’s Most Beautiful (and Misunderstood) Pet,” tells the history of pit bulls, corrects many of the negative stereotypes they confront, and is filled with inspiring stories and photographs about them.
Foster, the author of ”The Dogs Who Found Me” and its sequel, “Dogs I Have Met,” is founder of the Sula Foundation in New Orleans, which promotes responsible pit bull ownership.
In “I’m a Good Dog,” he profiles pit bulls that serve as therapy dogs, athletic heroes, search-and-rescue dogs, and loving pets, and looks at a few of the famous people who have owned them, including Helen Keller and Dr. Seuss.
Foster is embarking on a national tour for the book, and will be in Oakland this weekend to take part in a fundraiser for BADRAP. October 27 is the fifth anniversary of the arrival at BADRAP of 13 dogs from NFL player Michael Vick’s Bad Newz Kennels who would go on to begin new lives with local families.
Also appearing at the fundraiser will be Jim Gorant, author of “The Lost Dogs: Michael Vick’s Dogs and Their Tale of Rescue and Redemption and a new book, “Wallace: The Underdog Who Conquered a Sport, Saved a Marriage, and Championed Pit Bulls — One Flying Disc at a Time.”
Of the former Vick dogs that ended up in California, seven hold Canine Good Citizen certificates and three are now serving as therapy dogs in hospitals and children’s literacy programs.
Foster’s tour will contine with stops at Book Soup in Los Angeles and Annabee’s in Pacifica. He plans stops in November in Portland, Seattle, Marin County, New Orleans, Boston, New York, Baltimore, Providence, Connecticut, Ann Arbor, The Twin Cities and Chicago.
Posted by jwoestendiek October 25th, 2012 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: animals, awareness, badrap, beyond the myth, books, books on dogs, breed discrimination, documentaries, dog books, dogs, events, i'm a good dog, jim gorant, ken foster, movies, myths, pets, pit bull, pit bull awareness month, pit bulls, pitbull, stereotypes, the lost dogs, tribute
There was at least one “Scout” in the crowd last night at the Winston-Salem Dash game, and he, or she — I didn’t check — was wearing a purple bandana.
The Dash, a Minor League baseball team, has made a major commitment to dogs this season, holding five “Pups in the Park” nights.
The events are sponsored by the Forsyth Humane Society, and last night’s was the second of the season, featuring some of the dogs who have graduated from its prison program, “A New Leash on Life,” in which inmates at Forsyth Correctional Center train dogs that go on to be adopted.
Here’s one of the graduates arriving now:
Last night’s canine attendees — all of whom watch from a grassy knoll in left field — included lots of boxers, like Colby and Cypress (below left) and Gunner (below right).
Also in the crowd was Darwin, a three-legged beagle who seems to be a regular on Pups in the Park night:
Here’s another fan we’ve seen at every game we’ve gone to:
The Humane Society’s mascot was there (played last night by my son, Joe), and he got a chance to meet the Dash mascot, Bolt:
For more information on “Pups in the Park” games, visit the Forsyth Humane Society and Winston-Salem Dash websites. And if you haven’t been to one with your dog, give it a try — it’s a great night, whether you love the game, or just love your dog.
Posted by jwoestendiek May 31st, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: a new leash on life, activities, adopt, adoptable, adoption, animals, baseball, dash, dog friendly, dogs, events, forsyth humane society, minor league, new leash on life, pets, photography, promotions, pups in the park, shelters, winston salem dash, winston-salem
On Sunday May 20th, they’re planning their biggest yet.
Up to 100 participants are expected to showcase their dogs in the wake of the Maryland Court of Appeals Court ruling which labeled all pit bull and pit bull mix dogs to be “inherently dangerous.”
“B-More Dog’s goal for Pit Bulls on Parade is now — and has always been — to introduce people to real pet pit bulls and their people, thereby reducing the stereotype and myths that surround these dogs,” the organization said.
The parade will start at 11 a.m. at Rash Field and continue around the promenade to the Coast Guard Cutter Taney and back.
Participants in the walk will include family pets as well as pit bulls available for adoption at Baltimore Animal Rescue and Care Shelter, Inc. (BARCS). Local rescue groups such as Jasmine’s House, Adopt a Homeless Animal and FurEver Love often participate in the walk as well.
“B-More Dog was extremely disappointed to learn of the new ‘pit bull’ law in Maryland as a result of the Solesky v. Tracey case. B-More Dog has been working around the clock with regional and national experts to determine the best course of action to have this law changed,” said Pauline Houliaras, President of B-More Dog.
B-More Dog provides humane education in Baltimore city by taking trained and well-mannered pit bulls to community centers, after school programs, schools and churches.
For more information about Pit Bulls on Parade or any of the programs offered by B-More Dog, contact Pauline Houliaras at 410-292-3869 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Posted by jwoestendiek May 18th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, appeals court, b-more dog, baltimore, bmore dog, bmoredog, dangerous, dogs, education, events, inherently dangerous, inner harbor, maryland, parade, perceptions, pets, pit bull owners, pit bulls, pit bulls on parade, pitbull, pitbulls, rash field, ruling, stereotypes, training
The Maryland Court of Appeals opinion declaring all pit bulls — and conceivably any dog with any pit bull in it — “inherently dangerous” shouldn’t be interpreted as outlawing the breed.
It applies only to litigation, and law-abiding pit bulls and their owners should have nothing to fear, those who see reason in the opinion will point out.
But there’s a lot to fear. Even though the opinion directly affects only those who get sued, it indirectly affects everyone — in the form of pets being abandoned, overcrowded shelters, difficulty finding rental property and giving Maryland a reputation as a state where beings are judged, discriminated against and persecuted, all based on looks.
It’s definitely a step in the wrong direction, fraught with connotations of racism, or its canine equivalent; and, like most exhibits of intolerance, it shouldn’t be tolerated.
B-More Dog, a group that’s been fighting on behalf of pit bulls for a few years now, is among the organizations offering advice to pit bull owners, aimed at better understanding the opinion, undoing the damage it did and dealing with its after-effects.
The same case that led to the court opinion played a role in B-More dog forming. In 2007, 10-year-old Dominic Solesky was bitten by a pit bull that escaped from its yard. Not long after that, a Baltimore County councilman introduced legislation that would have required pit bulls to be muzzled in public, among other restrictions.
At a rally to protest the proposed law, the founding members of the organization met, went on to fight the legislation and formed B-More Dog to promote responsible dog ownership.
The Solesky family, meanwhile, filed a civil lawsuit in 2008 against the owners of the pit bull and their landlord. In 2009, the Circuit Court for Baltimore County ruled that the landlord, could not be held (monetarily) responsible for the dog bite because there was no way she could have known that the dog was “dangerous”.
The Solesky family appealed this decision to the Court of Special Appeals which found in favor of the Solesky family. Then, the landlord’s insurance company asked the Maryland Court of Appeals to hear the case. Its opinion last week, saying in, effect, that all pit bulls are dangerous and owners and landlords should know that, is the one that has sent some pit bull owners into states of near panic.
“B-More Dog has been in touch the best and the brightest people, both locally and nationally, who fight breed discrimination,” the organization said in a newsletter this week. “We remain confident that breed discrimination laws will be defeated in Maryland and we are preparing for the marathon battle ahead.”
B-more Dog isn’t the only organization that’s working to inform pit bill owners of the court opinion’s implications.
The Animal Farm Foundation put together information for pit bull owners that you can find it here. The Humane Society of the United States has some advice for renters and others that you can find here.
Those organziations and others are also looking at legal options, including the possibility of the Maryland General Assembly passing a law to undo the court decision. More information on this possibility can be found on this HSUS Facebook Page.
B-More Dog is planning a “Rally to Support Dog Owners Across Maryland,” and has scheduled some other events as well.
They’ll be on hand May 12, handing out stickers and more at the Baltimore Humane Society’s Paws on Parade event this Saturday (May 12).
Next Saturday (May 19), they’ll be holding ”Pins for Pits, a family-friendly bowling fundraiser at Country Club Lanes, 9020 Pulaski Highway in Baltimore, from 5-7 p.m.
And on Sunday (May 20), they’ll be holding their regular “Pit Bulls on Parade”
walk at Rash Field at Baltimore’s Inner Harbor, starting at 11 a.m.
Posted by jwoestendiek May 11th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: advice, animal farm foundation, animals, b-more dog, breed-specific, breeds, court, court of appeals, discrimination, dogs, events, general assembly, help, hsus, implications, inherently dangerous, law, litigation, maryland, mixes, opinion, pets, pit bull, pit bulls, pitbull, pitbulls
It’s time for DogFest, the Baltimore Humane Society’s annual day-long celebration of dogs.
It’s this Saturday, Oct. 15 (with a rain date of Oct. 22) at the Baltimore Humane Society, 1601 Nicodemus Road in Reisterstown.
Gates open at 9 a.m., and activities continue until 6 p.m., with a full schedule of games, contests and events, and plenty of vendors, prizes, experts, food and adoptable pets
The entrance fee is $10, and parking is free.
As usual, the Humane Society requests no retractable leashes.
Keep reading for the full schedule. Read more »
Posted by jwoestendiek October 13th, 2011 under Muttsblog.
Tags: adopt, adoptions, agility, animals, baltimore, baltimore humane society, big, canine, canine agility, contests, costumes, dancing dogs, dog, dogfest, dogs, events, experts, fundraiser, games, kissing dogs, lookalikes, mutts, pets, shelter, singing dogs, small, tricks, vendors
Whether you’re a fan of trains, Ravens (the football kind), dogs, or all three, you’re invited to a Ravens “Pet Rally” Saturday (Sept. 10), proceeds from which will benefit Baltimore Animal Rescue and Care Shelter (BARCS).
The event takes place (rain or shine) from 5 to 10 p.m. at the B&O Railroad Museum and Round House. In addition to vendors, food, beer, games and a silent auction, the event will feature music by Outbreak and Against The Grain.
Tickets are $15, and that includes admission to the museum and concert.
For more information call Terri at 410-952-5778 or stop by BARCS, located at 301 Stockholm Street.
Posted by jwoestendiek September 8th, 2011 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, B&O Railroad Museum, baltimore, baltimore animal rescue and care shelter, barcs, dogs, events, football, pet rally, pets, ravens
Then their fur is boiled, torn or torched off so they can be chopped up, sold and eaten.
It remains a thriving, and often shady, business — even though only a minority of South Koreans eat dog, and even though those numbers are decreasing.
Recent years have seen a rise in pet keeping in South Korea, and along with it a higher degree of respect afforded to dogs, especially those of the purebred variety.
At the same time, South Korea’s fledgling animal welfare movement is becoming stronger and more active, and banning the eating of dog is at the top of its agenda.
Still, there are those, inside South Korea and out, who would like to see a total and immediate end to dog meat consumption.
Among them is In Defense of Animals (IDA), an organization that has been holding a global day of protest against the practice for the past seven years.
This year, IDA has joined forces with two South Korean animal welfare groups – Coexistence for Animal Rights on Earth (CARE) and Korean Animal Rights Advocates (KARA), to protest dog meat consumption.
The 7th annual International Day of Action for South Korean Dogs and Cats is tomorrow — Tuesday, August 16 — and is timed to coincide with what is the peak period of dog consumption in South Korea, the hottest summer months. Many of those who market and consume canine meat maintain it increases vitality, male sexual prowess and general health — all myths, according to IDA.
At the events, held simultaneously in dozens of cities around the world, activists pass out leaflets and hold signs, often outside South Korean Embassies and Consulates.
You can find a full list of the day’s events in America and other countries here.
I met some of South Korea’s animal activists, and visited an outdoor dog market during a trip to Seoul in 2009 to research my book, “DOG, INC.: The Uncanny Inside Story of Cloning Man’s Best Friend.”
South Korea was the first country to clone a dog — a feat some say was made possible by the easy access to dogs from dog farms. Both before and after the birth of Snuppy, the first canine clone, scientists used farm dogs both for their eggs and as surrogates in their attempts to clone the species.
Given that, I felt the need to visit Moran Market, an open air bazaar outside Seoul where cages line the street for a full city block, and dogs can be purchased in part or in whole, live or dead, cooked or raw, for as little as $100.
Customers commonly choose a live dog from a cage, at which point the dog is pulled out with a noose attached to a stick, dragged into a nearby room and given a fatal electrical shock with what resembles a cattle prod. It is thrown into a steel vat of boiling water to soften the meat and make its fur easier to remove. From there it is tumbled in a dryer that removes most of the fur. A torch is used to burn off any that remains, and the dog is then butchered to order while you wait. About 25 percent of South Korea’s dog meat is sold through Moran Market.
On my visit to the market, workers waved me down. They offered me a seat by the fire, a cup of tea and a cigarette. One grabbed a long stick, poked it through the bars in the cage and jabbed several dogs to show me how lively they were. The asking price was about $150, though it eventually dropped to $100.
While a few purebreds were in the mix, almost all were mutts. Most dog meat in Korea comes from mixed breeds that, while similar to the native Jindo breed in appearance, are mongrels, and are often referred to simply as “yellow dogs.” Most of them have been raised on farms, spending most of their lives in cages, or on three-foot chains.
Seeing I was uninterested in buying an entire live dog, the merchants offered me half of one – boiled and de-furred, but with its head, tail and paws still intact.
While there is disagreement over how far back dog eating in Korea goes, long stretches of poverty and war made it more popular, and necessary. While many never took up the practice, or have abandoned it, an estimated 500 to 600 restaurants in Seoul alone serve dog, in various forms.
Animal activists told me that the bulk of market dogs come from farms, but that stolen and stray pets often end up in the mix, and even dogs sold by unethical animal shelters.
“There are dogs picked up as strays off the streets and dogs that were being used to breed pets but have gotten old and useless,” said Soyoun Park, president of CARE.
“The way you can distinguish if it’s a farm dog or a homeless dog is that those dogs that are raised at the farm won’t look at a human directly. They don’t want eye contact. Those who are not afraid about looking a human in the eye are usually dogs that have been raised in someone’s house.”
Dog was removed from the menus of many restaurants during the 1988 Seoul Olympics, and in 1991, South Korea passed its first animal protection law, ostensibly forbidding the sale and consumption of dog meat.
But the government has done little to enforce it — nearly 6,500 stores in the country still sell dog meat, according to the IDA.
As some some activists in Seoul told me, pressure from outside the country, up to now, seems to have had little effect on decreasing dog meat consumption in South Korea. Any true and lasting change, they believe, will likely have to come from within.
And as one pointed out, Americans — with all our righteous indignation — live in a country where the number of dogs euthanized at shelters every year is just about the same as the number consumed in Korea.
When it comes to the well-being of dogs as a species, be they American or Korean, there is work to be done. I’m just glad there are people — in both countries — doing it.
(Photos by John Woestendiek)
Posted by jwoestendiek August 15th, 2011 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animal rights, animal welfare, cloning, coexistence for animal rights on earth, dog farms, dog inc., dog meat, eating dog, embassies, events, farm dogs, ida, in defense of animals, international day of action, korean animal rights advocates, laws, market, moran market, photos, pressure, protest, seoul, south korea
There’s a $20 registration donation, and 100% of proceeds will be donated to organizations that prevent animal abuse, and treat abused animals, according to the event’s sponsor, the Peacekeepers Motorcycle Club.
(I think you can trust them; the organization is made up mostly of law enforcement types.)
The ride — co-sponsored by the Mayor’s Anti-Animal Abuse Task Force — starts at 11 a.m. at Harley-Davidson of Baltimore, 8845 Pulaski Highway.
The ride will end, around 3 p.m., at the Bluford Drew Jemison Academy, 1130 N. Caroline Street, where music, food, games and other activities for adults and children from are planned throughout the day.
“You do not have to ride a motorcycle to participate,” the club says. “Come in your car, SUV, pick-up truck, or on your scooter, mo-ped, bicycle, tricycle, or tired feet.”
You can learn more about the event at its Facebook page.
Posted by jwoestendiek August 15th, 2011 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animal abuse, animal cruelty, animal welfare, animals, baltimore, dogs, events, fundraiser, harley-davidson, maryland, mayors anti animal abuse task force, motorcycle club, motorcycles, peacekeepers, pets, ride, ride against animal cruelty
The event, held at the Maryland SPCA on Falls Road in Baltimore, includes paw painting, bobbing for hot dogs, off-leash play, and beverages, of course.
The theme for the rescheduled even will remain the same — “Barkaritaville” — and tropical attire is welcome.
Tickets can be purchased online for $10 per person in advance or at the gate for $15 per person.
Those who purchased tickets for the July 22 event can use them on July 29.
Posted by jwoestendiek July 22nd, 2011 under Muttsblog.
Tags: adopt, animals, dogs, events, happy hour, heat, maryland, mdpsca, pets, postponed, rescheduled, rescue, shelter, spca, wind & wag, wine and wag